Research Journal

Every researcher should keep a research journal. Regardless of the medium you choose to express your thoughts, you should be recording them somewhere. Not only will the process of recording them help you to clarify them, but you will have a permanent record of what you're doing with your time. These notes will prove essential when writing papers on this research, telling your committee what you've been doing or recalling what you were doing on this topic fifteen years down the line.

Google Sites

Some people prefer to use pencil-and-paper notebooks as journals. I find this gets cumbersome very quickly. I prefer to use an electronic format for my journal. I highly recommend using Google Sites. It is free, accessible from any computer, easy to use, easy to add plots/photos/pdfs, and easy to link other webpages online. However, perhaps its best attribute is its ability to be searched. Say you want to look at everything you ever wrote about a particular parameter in your code called "AutoAdjustToAwesome", search for it using the internal google search. This is something that you'll never be able to do with a pencil-and-paper journal (although I've tried). Lastly, you can make these totally private, public or somewhere in between, which is very useful if you want to share a few particular pages with your advisor or collaborator.

Added by Cameron.